Thursday, September 20, 2012

Home­land Secu­rity: A New Royal Guard?


September 19, 2012

Some, including this writer, are increas­ingly con­cerned that the Depart­ment of Home­land Secu­rity (DHS) is mor­phing into a kind of royal guard that would be loyal only to the Admin­is­tra­tion. Orig­i­nally tasked with fighting exter­nally orig­i­nated ter­rorism, DHS has slowly remade itself into an internal secu­rity force. It has infil­trated vir­tu­ally all forms of travel within the U.S.: Air, rail, bus and even freeway check­points. It is asserting its authority over major sporting events and other large venues.
It is esti­mated that there are in excess of 270 mil­lion privately-owned firearms in the United States. The rate of sat­u­ra­tion is approx­i­mately 88.8 firearms per 100 people. In con­trast, total weapons among the nation’s police force number upwards of 897,000.
If every policeman fired his weapon 1,000 times per year (99.99 per­cent for pro­fi­ciency training), then entire force would require 897 mil­lion rounds of ammu­ni­tion. Let’s round it up to an even 1 bil­lion rounds of ammu­ni­tion – for all the police forces across America.
Why do non-military fed­eral agen­cies (who answer directly to the Pres­i­dent) feel that they also need to acquire well over 1 bil­lion rounds of ammu­ni­tion by then end of 2012? Why does the Social Secu­rity Admin­is­tra­tion need 174,000 rounds? Or the National Oceanic and Atmos­pheric Admin­is­tra­tion, 46,000 rounds? About one bil­lion rounds will go to DHS.
The majority of the Administration’s pur­chases, including for DHS, are for copper-jacketed hollow point bul­lets.According to Major Gen­eral Jerry Curry (USA (Ret.), “Hollow point bul­lets are so lethal that the Geneva Con­ven­tion does not allow their use on the battle field in time of war. Hollow point bul­lets don’t just stop or hurt people, they pen­e­trate the body, spread out, frag­ment and cause max­imum damage to the body’s organs. Death often fol­lows.” (emphasis added)
So, the Admin­is­tra­tion is stocking up on lethal ammu­ni­tion to use in the U.S., that even the mil­i­tary doesn’t use in Afghanistan or Iraq? This type of ammu­ni­tion is never used for training pur­poses, by the way, because training ammo is much cheaper.
Gen­eral Curry fur­ther writes,
“We have enough mil­i­tary forces to main­tain law and order in the U.S. even during times of civil unrest.
“We have local police, backed up by each state’s National Guard, backed up by the Depart­ment of Defense. So in addi­tion to all these forces why does DHS need its own pri­vate army? Why do the SSA, NOAA and other gov­ern­ment agen­cies need to create their own civilian secu­rity forces armed with hollow nose bullets?
“Were I the JCS, and if I wasn’t already fully briefed on this matter, I’d stop the pur­chase of hollow point bul­lets, ask the sec­re­tary of Defense why all this ammu­ni­tion is being pur­chased and spread around the country? If I got answers like the ones Con­gress got during the inves­ti­ga­tion of Oper­a­tion Fast and Furious – I’d start tracking all ammu­ni­tion deliv­eries nation­wide to find out what orga­ni­za­tions and units are using them, for what pur­pose and, if it is not con­sti­tu­tional, pre­pare to coun­teract what­ever it is that they are doing”. (emphasis added)
Is the DHS indeed building its own pri­vate army? If so, for what pur­pose? We already have more than ade­quate defense between mil­i­tary and national guard units in every state. Does DHS have a dif­ferent loy­alty than the mil­i­tary or local police forces?
Is this the answer to Obama’s 2008 cam­paign state­ment that “We cannot con­tinue to rely on our mil­i­tary in order to achieve the national secu­rity objec­tives we’ve set. We’ve got to have a civilian national secu­rity force that’s just as pow­erful, just as strong, just as well-funded.”
I fully agree that Con­gress should imme­di­ately inves­ti­gate Fed­eral stock­piling of lethal ammu­ni­tion, and when the stonewalling begins, don’t let it turn into another black hole, like it has with Oper­a­tion Fast and Furious.

Pol­i­tics

Every national polit­ical cycle is full of unex­pected twists and turns, and 2012 is no exception.
As the GOP selec­tion process nar­rowed down to Mitt Romney, I noted that Romney was the major recip­ient of Wall Street con­tri­bu­tions, making him the apparent “chosen one” for the nom­i­na­tion. Assuming that he was the “chosen one” for the Pres­i­dency was premature.
An alter­nate and viable pos­si­bility is that Romney could simply be the “con­trolled oppo­si­tion” to insure that Obama was elected for a second term. The milk-toast effort by Sen. John McCain in 2008 was an example of a rigged can­di­date: His cam­paign failed at every turn to engage the Amer­ican voter on the most impor­tant issues.
Thus far, Romney is fol­lowing in McCain’s foot­steps. He has not called Obama out on any key issue that could and should boost his rat­ings. for instance, he could blast the Pres­i­dent for killing the Key­stone Pipeline, and pledge to restore it and bring the U.S. to energy inde­pen­dence. He could nail the Pres­i­dent for ruining the coal industry and pledge to reverse those poli­cies. He could attack any number of uncon­sti­tu­tional Exec­u­tive Orders and pledge to over­turn them. He could demand answers to the Fast and Furious scandal and pledge to rid the Jus­tice Depart­ment of crim­inal and uncon­sti­tu­tional activ­i­ties. He could rail against sleazy Chicago-style pol­i­tics being employed by Obama and pledge to restore elec­toral fair­ness and non-partisanship in the Amer­ican voting system.
He is doing none of that so far.
Romney’s failure to dis­tin­guish him­self is bad enough, but the fact that pos­i­tive public sen­ti­ment is riding high may be even more dam­aging to his cam­paign. With the Fed’s recent pledge for QE3, stocks are fur­ther ele­vated and people are tired of all the eco­nomic gloom and doom of the last five years. His­tory clearly shows that an incum­bent Pres­i­dent will pre­vail in a reelec­tion attempt when public sen­ti­ment is high. Thus, Obama has an his­tor­ical edge without even opening his mouth.
In short, this writer will cur­rently call “Obama to win down the home stretch.”

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